Have some sourdough starter to use up? Try this Sourdough Fougasse recipe! This French bread has a crispy crust and is soft on the inside. A delicious homemade bread recipe that is a great way to use your sourdough starter.
Today I have another way for you to use sourdough starter and it's delicious! Fougasse is a type of French bread that is wonderful as an appetizer or side dish.
Maybe you're wondering how it's different from focaccia because they do look similar, but sourdough fougasse is a traditional French bread while focaccia is Italian. The one thing they have in common is that they're both a type of flat bread but the textures are very different.
This sourdough fougasse has a crispy, chewy texture while focaccia is softer. I love to make both, but when I have sourdough starter on hand I love to make fougasse.
Sourdough fougasse is the perfect bread to serve as an appetizer or snack with glasses of wine. You can add a little dipping sauce on the side or some olive oil and balsamic. Or, serve it with dinner as a side dish with salad, soup, or pasta.
If you have sourdough starter on hand, this fougasse recipe is a great way to use it up. No starter? Why not make a batch of sourdough starter and then give this bread recipe a try.
- Sourdough starter (fed)
- Lukewarm water
- Olive oil
These are the ingredients for a basic sourdough fougasse, but you can add extras to give the bread different flavors like herbs, seasonings, and olive oil.
For this version, I flavor the bread with fresh rosemary, dried oregano, rock salt, and a little olive oil.
How to Make It
Whisk the flour and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the water and starter and use the dough hook to knead the mixture for a few minutes.
Let the dough rest for 10 minutes and then knead it again while drizzling in the oil. Knead for four more minutes. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave the dough to sit for four hours.
Stretch and fold the dough three times every 30 minutes for the first hour and a half. Leave the dough to rise for the the rest of the time.
Lightly coat two baking sheets with olive oil and then line the oiled baking sheet with parchment paper. Coat the paper with oil.
Divide the dough in half.
Shape the parts into a rectangle or oval on a lightly floured work surface. Make cuts in the dough with a sharp knife and then place each on the prepared sheet pans.
Let the bread rise for two to three hours.
Brush the dough with oil olive and add the toppings. Bake the bread for 12 to 15 minutes at 425°F or until golden brown. You can eat the bread warm or transfer it to a wire rack to cool.
Different Topping Ideas for Fougasse
Like Italian focaccia, you can top your fougasse with different toppings. Because this bread has a crispy crust, you don't want to add too much or anything that will release water while it bakes - that will just make the crust soggy. Here are some ideas you might like to try:
- Herbs: Sturdy fresh herbs work best like rosemary. Or, you can use dried herbs like parsley, basil, Herbes de Provence, thyme, tarragon, chives or other dried herbs.
- Seasonings: Salt (sea salt or rock salt are best), freshly cracked black pepper, red pepper flakes, or other dried spices will work, too.
- Oils: Instead of olive oil tried flavored oils for the topping like garlic oil.
- Olives: Finely chopped Kalamata olives or green olives would work well, too. Just be sure to drain them and pat them dry first.
Tips for the Best Fougasse
When you shape the dough, try to shape it into a rectangle or oval approximately 29x19 centimeters big. Since it's a French flatbread, you don't want it too thick.
Have fun creating a design with the cuts in the dough. Traditional fougasse is oven made to look like a leaf or wheat, but you can cut diagonal cuts in the dough to create your own design.
The more cuts you have in the dough the crispier your bread will be. Doing this creates more surface area that will brown in the oven creating that nice crispy golden crust. It also makes it easy for everyone to pull off a piece of bread to enjoy.
Why not make a beautiful fougasse to share with friends and family? It's a wonderful homemade bread and perfect for sharing - Enjoy!
More Recipes to Try
- Easy Pizza Dough
- Easy Sourdough Focaccia Recipe
- Multigrain Bread with Whole Wheat Flour and Bread Flour
Sourdough Fougasse Recipe
- 2⅓ cup +1 tablespoon all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup +½ tablespoon sourdough starter (fed)
- ⅔ cup +½ tablespoon water (lukewarm)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2-3 sprigs rosemary
- ½-1 teaspoon oregano
- 6-8 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
- In the mixing bowl whisk together the flour and salt. Add the water and starter, with the dough hook knead for 2-3 minutes. Let the dough rest for 10 minutes. Start to knead again and drizzle in the oil. Continue to knead for 4 minutes.
- Cover the bowl with a towel and let sit for 4 hours. Stretch and fold the dough 3 times every 30 minutes for the first 1 ½ hours, then let the dough rise for the remaining 2 ½ hours.
- Lightly brush 2 cookie sheets with olive oil, then cover with parchment paper, brush with more olive oil (3-4 tablespoons)
- Divide the dough on a lightly floured flat surface and shape into a rectangle or oval shape approximately 11x7 inches (29 x19 cm) making cuts in the dough, place each on the prepared cookies sheets. Cover and let rise 2-3 hours.
- Pre-heat the oven to 425F/220C.
- Brush the dough with olive oil and sprinkle with rock salt, chopped rosemary and oregano. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden. Move immediately to a wire rack to cool or eat warm. Serve with a dipping sauce if desired. Enjoy!